Here is an excellent article for anyone trying to save and invest for retirement. I urge you to read the full article. You might also like my article on how financial fasting can help you save for the future.
May 27, 2021 by Kathleen Coxwell
You’ve probably heard a lot of advice about how to save more money for retirement. Everyone tells you that you really need to do it. And if you’re like a lot of people, you probably think that it’s a great idea — you are just not exactly sure where to find the cash.
Learn how to save more money so you can jump into a happy secure retirement!
Money can be a sneaky thing. It hides, oftentimes in plain sight. Of course, you’d notice an extra $200 in your wallet. But what about 25 cents? Maybe not, but that quarter can make a big difference, too.
If you want to know how to save more money but genuinely don’t know how to swing it, here are 22 tricks that make it happen. They won’t pinch. And if you start habits like these, soon enough, they could make a tremendous difference in your retirement.
1. How to save more money for retirement? Ignore your raise
If you are lucky enough to get a raise at work, you might consider directing the extra money directly into your retirement savings account. You have been living off your previous salary, so you won’t be any worse off now if those funds go into savings instead of getting spent.
Getting a raise might be one of the most satisfying experiences. You work hard, and a bump up in pay shows that the company really notices and appreciates your efforts. But what if you hadn’t gotten the raise? Would you suddenly be financially destitute? Probably not.
Each time you get a wage or salary increase, do yourself and your retirement a favor. Pretend that it didn’t happen. Instead, pluck that money out of your checking account and put it into retirement.
Merrill Lynch Edge says “Every time you receive a raise, increase your contribution percentage.” That’s another way to save. According to Fidelity Investments, “Putting just 1% more of your salary into a tax-advantaged retirement account like a 401(k) or 403(b) could make a noticeable difference in your ability to afford the retirement you want.”
It might help to reset how you think about raises. Can you transform your thinking to believe that the raise is really intended to help you in the future, not now?
If you genuinely need more money now, can you at least devote a percentage of the raise to retirement savings?
2. Make savings automated
There are many different approaches for how to save more money for retirement.
- Some people don’t think too much about saving — they just hope it happens. This type of saver might deposit their paychecks and hope that something is leftover as savings.
- Some people consciously deposit money into dedicated retirement savings accounts.
- Others automate the process and savings are deducted from their paycheck and automatically added to existing investments.
Automating your savings is proven to be the most effective way to ensure that you actually save. You don’t have to think about it, it just happens — no hassle, no excuses.
Your human resources department or your bank can help you set up an automated system.
3. Figure out how much you NEED and set goals! (You’ll likely double your savings rate)
Perhaps the biggest roadblock to being able to save for retirement is not knowing exactly how much you need for a secure retirement. The majority of Americans do not have a retirement plan and they do not know how much is required to retire comfortably.
Research has found that those who have written goals and a written plan for achieving those goals are 1.2–1.4 more likely to succeed. Other studies have shown that having a plan can double your savings rate.
Seems like it may be worth your while to take a minute to find out for yourself exactly how much you need for retirement and create a detailed retirement plan. The NewRetirement Retirement Plannermakes it easy.
Start by entering basic information and get some initial feedback on where you stand. Then, add more detail and more accurately estimate how much you need. Best of all, you can try an infinite number of scenarios. Forbes Magazine calls the platform “A new approach to retirement planning” and it was named a best retirement calculator by the American Association of Individual Investors (AAII) and CanIRetireYet.
It is easy to use but is designed to help you imagine your future and take the steps you need to take to make that future happy and secure.
4. How to save more money for retirement? Overcome “present bias”
Saving for retirement may seem daunting. You are probably already dealing with more immediate needs: mortgage, auto loans, credit cards, maybe you’re paying for your children’s college education. If you are feeling overwhelmed, you’re not alone. What’s more, your brain isn’t always helping.
A study by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) discovered that our brains often work against us. Turns out, most of us have what they call “present bias,” the tendency to place greater emphasis on those events that occur closer to the present. If you’re 55, for example, and assume retirement is still 10 years away, you’re more likely to focus your financial efforts on saving up for a summer vacation or putting money into a 529 plan for your child’s college.
Retirement seems so far away.
Simply being aware of this bias can help you overcome it.
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